Bad Bus Plans

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Bad Bus Plans

Dear Editor:

Your October 12 article, "Fireworks at CB14 Meeting" shows the stupidity of MTA planners.

They would rather see the disabled and seniors use Access-A-Ride (which cost them over $50 per trip) than local buses.

The purpose of eliminating bus stops is to increase bus speeds. When bus stops are very lightly utilized, as is the case with the western end of the Q22, most buses skip most of the stops anyway most of the time. That means that the buses will not save any significant time by eliminating stops, but passengers' trips will become longer. That is because under the plan, they will have to walk further to and from the bus stops and the chance of just missing a bus will increase. This change could add over 20 minutes to someone's trip, turning a 20-minute trip into a 40-minute one.

Also, the MTA, by making their proposed change, violates their own service planning guidelines, which stipulate passengers should not walk more than a quarter mile to the nearest bus route. Walking distances will now exceed a half mile in some cases.

This is no way to encourage bus travel. Bus stops should only be eliminated when bus stops are very close together and usage is moderate. It makes no sense to eliminate stops when usage is very high or very low. When usage is high and stops are eliminated, the remaining stops become overcrowded so the bus just spends more time loading and unloading and the amount of time saved is negligible. The only time saved is from buses not having to accelerate or decelerate at the eliminated stops.

The MTA's justification for the change is that few riders use the western end of the route. Unless there is a major destination at a terminus, light usage is typical of any route in the city a mile or two from its end. The B44, one of the heaviest routes in Brooklyn, carries no more than six passengers per bus at all times in the last mile in either direction on the southern end.

This is very a shortsighted cost-cutting measure, which will only increase costs when riders switch to Access-A-Ride and livery services. But will the MTA listen to the Board's objections or go ahead with the plan anyway?

(I am a retired director of bus planning for the MTA NYCT and a member of the Queens Public Transit Committee.)

Allan Rosen

 

Rocks-Away

Dear Editor:

I have to give a shout out to my co-Idea Guy in-residence on his crowd-building jetty idea.  Brilliant!!! Now why didn’t I think of that?

Sure, it might be easier for the Army Corps to just build the jetties as they are doing right now just down the shore in Long Beach. But what fun is that? Besides, when government fails to do what’s needed, as is often the case, we have to be prepared to take things into our own hands, and pockets.

Perhaps, not coincidently, I’ve noticed more than the average number of people chucking rocks into the ocean, so maybe this idea is catching on. I know I’m taking it seriously.  Lately I’ve been studying the pitching style of Yankee fastball phenomenon, Ardolis Chapman so I can chuck my stones far enough to ensure our new jetty will offer some real protection. Rockaway may be in trouble.

I was very impressed to read that Long Beach is not actually getting new jetties but rather replacing their worn-out existing jetties! Good for them! Maybe Rockaway should hire or elect whomever they have dealing with the Feds.

Back to Boyle’s idea… can we really build the jetties we need one small stone at a time? Maybe. Doing some quick math, it seems that if each of Rockaway’s 120,000 residents threw in just 10 stones a week, we’d have over 50 million of them in the water by next year’s hurricane season. Even if that’s only enough for one jetty, it would be the biggest jetty project Rockaway has seen in 50 years.

Rick Horan

 

Rally Call

Dear Editor:

Many thanks for publishing a full page article and petition “Calling all Communities” to encourage all Rockaway and Broad Channel residents, organizations and business to support the Rockaway Storm Protection Group initiatives for the  5th year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. 

The Rockaway Storm Protection Group is counting on every single organization, business and resident to be on the beach at Beach 129th Street at 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 28 to send a message to the NYC Mayor’s Office, the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, the NYC Parks Department and the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation that they need to cut through the red tape and give us the protection we need! They also need to use the funds provided by Congress for Rockaway storm protection for the intended purpose! 

We expect all our elected officials to join us in support of this action. With so much on the line, we as a community are coming together to demand protection for ourselves, our children, our grandchildren and future generations who have the right to create happy memories and raise their children in our beautiful Rockaway.

Elda Vale

 

Local Percent?

Dear Editor:

In last week's issue, the first item in Facts You Probably Don't Need stated that 30 percent  of American adults don't drink any alcohol. Having been born and raised here and having done more than my fair share (I don't drink anymore), I wonder what the percentage is for Rockaway. Anyone care to share their thoughts?

Andy Feldman

 

Diet Doubts

Dear Editor:

Dr. Galvin’s comments in the latest issue about the Mediterranean Diet may be true, but don’t really follow the evidence.

Studies have shown that either high carbohydrate/low fat or high fat/low carbohydrate diets will result in weight loss with similar caloric limits. BUT recent controlled studies demonstrate that the high fat diet is (1) more successful in the long run in controlling weight, and (2) even after controlling for weight reduction, results in fewer cardiovascular incidents. So it is not surprising that the Mediterranean Diet is “healthier” than a high carb diet.

But the question remains, what sort of high fat diet is best? Is the Mediterranean Diet superior to other high fat diets?

Eugene Falik

 

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